Whole grain diet may lower Type 2 diabetes risk, study finds

NEW YORK Lowering one's risk of developing Type 2 diabetes can be as simple as implementing whole grains into a diet.

Qi Sun of Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and colleagues analyzed data from 39,765 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study and 157,463 women in the Nurses' Health Study I and II. All of the participants did not have diabetes, heart disease or cancer at the start of the studies.

During follow-up, the researchers found 10,507 incidents of Type 2 diabetes. Conversely, the researchers found that people who ate five or more servings per week of white rice were 17% more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than those who ate less than one serving of white rice per month.

People who ate two or more servings of brown rice per week, however, were 11% less likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than those who ate less than one serving of brown rice per month.

"We estimated that replacing 50 grams/day intake of white rice with the same amount of brown rice was associated with a 16% lower risk of Type 2 diabetes, whereas the same replacement with whole grains as a group was associated with a 36 percent lower diabetes risk," Sun said.

The study was presented Wednesday at the American Heart Association's Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism Conference in San Francisco.